Coppice Valley Primary School, based on the outskirts of Harrogate town centre, has announced a number of initiatives as it seeks to enhance its educational offer, children’s wellbeing and engagement with the local community.
The school, which prides itself on its teaching and pastoral care, also benefits from huge amounts of outdoor green space which enables it to provide outstanding learning experiences and supports the wellbeing of its pupils.
According to a report by the University of Plymouth in 2016 it reported on the changing nature of childhoods with less time being spent outdoors with the loss of exposure to the natural environment having negative long-term consequences. A study from Derby University has also shown that ‘children who were more connected to nature had significantly higher English attainment’ and a further report evidencing that exposure to learning outdoors provides a route for young people to become more resilient.
Children at Coppice Valley have regular access to the outdoors throughout the school day, whether it be for formal learning, gardening or even tai-chi lessons in the schools meadow. Year 2 pupils also have the opportunity to spend a night under the stars by camping out in the school field.
Having joined Harrogate based multi-academy trust, Red Kite Learning Trust, in 2017 the school has been working closely alongside the trust and the 12 other schools in its network to enhance Coppice Valley’s offer to children and families. Better engagement with the local community and businesses in the area will provide its pupils with improved outcomes and reach the ambitious targets the Head and governors have for the school.
One of these activities includes the redevelopment to the front of the school which will see a community garden being created with the support of CNG and Horticap. Fencing will be removed with traditional hedges replacing the boundaries, orchards, herb and wildlife gardens will be planted, along with a picnic area for use of the local community. More recently 100 trees were planted to the rear of the school in partnerships with Harrogate based High Street TV as it seeks to reduce the impact of its carbon footprint.
To better portray the school’s ethos, vision and community engagement, a new logo has also been developed which portrays the natural environment surrounding the school and its inks with the local and business community.
Commenting on the developments, Headteacher Emma Meadus said “Coppice Valley is a wonderful school both inside and out. Our premises allow us to enhance the education offer we provide taking the learning far from the classroom. We’re committed to providing a space which educates our children not just on the primary curriculum but on the wider issues affecting society today such as sustainability, wellbeing and nature”.
Throughout October, Coppice Valley will be hosting a number of Open Days for prospective parents and the local community to see what the school has to offer and hear of their plans for the future. More information can be found on the schools Facebook page.